Cover-Up. (Letters)


I take exception to several of the recently published remarks concerning the "unseemly nature" of the "Welcome to the Greenhouse"cover (Summer 2001). It may not be attractive (aside from Ms. Earth), but it does attract attention. What sort of demographic is a man kissing a fish supposed to attract?

I don't know how many new readers pick up the magazine from newsstands, (I had a hell of a time even finding a newsstand that carried it) but I'd bet that the names Gibson, Stephenson and Sterling attracted a readership from college newsstands that had never touched Whole Earth before. Who knows; maybe they'll come back!

I hadn't realized there was a magazine. I remember the Catalog from my youth, but I wasn't a subscriber. I am now!

Duncan Stewart
By email

P.S. The photo of "Delicate Arch" on the Winter 2001 issue should mollify the skeptics, I should think. Beautiful!

I am a long-time Whole Earth subscriber. I must express my disappointment with several items in the Winter 2001 issue.

Whole Earth covers generally relate to a major theme of the issue, but I can't discern the message of the computer-faked eye candy on the Winter 2001 cover. The polar sky would never appear at such a low angle behind the Natural Bridge, whose bright red color might be credible at sunset or sunrise, but not so given the angle of the light shining on it in the cover image.

The diagram "power delivery designs" on page 17 doesn't make any sense to me as an electrical engineer. The caption is nonsense and self-contradictory "... the electric current dead-ends." Electrical current cannot "dead-end"; it only flows in a loop. "In loop arrangements, heat is wasted when currents cross each other, but they are also more efficient in distributing current." Heat is the waste product, not what is wasted. If the grid is more efficient, then less power is wasted, not more.

The article "The Politically Correct Nuke" states: "though the pebbles heat to more than 1,000 [degrees] C, the coatings trap the radiation inside." The coatings might contain radioactive materials, but not radiation. No chain reaction would occur if radiation could not propagate among the pebbles. …

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